Lionel Blair

Lionel Blair

Celebrating his sixtieth year in the business, television and theatre star, Lionel Blair took some time out to talk to about his plans for Christmas, his cameo on Britain's Got the Pop Factor and his work for charity. He is currently starring in a virtual dancing game, all in the name of charity!

You are celebrating sixty years in show business. Congratulations! How does it feel to be celebrating 60 years?

Well, I'm only 49 year plus VAT! It's really flown by and it's been the most wonderful dream. Absolutely wonderful!

Well, you began your life in showbiz back in 1948, playing a munchkin in the Wizard of Oz, did you every imagine or dream back then that you would have such a fantastic career?

I thought I'd be in Hollywood by now! You just have to go with the flow, and just go with the jobs you get. I was only fifteen when my Dad died, and I had to go into musicals. It was just a question of working as often and as much as possible, and that's just what you do in this business. You just work when you can!

Throughout your career you have done so much - acting, directing, dancing and presenting. What's been your favourite?

Performing really. I enjoy that more than anything!

'Oh, I love a good cup of English tea! With cucumber sandwiches and a nice fresh cream scone!'

And the people you have worked with. Ella Fitzgerald, Liza Minnelli and Sammy Davis Jrn! Who was your favourite to work with?

Sammy Davis Jrn became my best friend, so working with him was a great joy.

More recently you're working with Elizabeth Finn Care and you have produced a new web game for charity, can you tell us more about that?

They asked me to do it to help raise money for the charity. With the credit crunch it's just so hard to get sponsorship, so if I can do something to help I will. I'll do anything for charity. It's like giving something back.

How did you become involved with Elizabeth Finn Care, of which you are a patron?

Well, they came to me and told me about it and I thought there are lots of charities for children, which is great but this is for people penniless out of no fault of their own, and I think they need help.

The prize from the 'Dancing on Thin Ice' web game is a tea for two with yours truly, so Lionel how do you take your tea?

Oh, I love a good cup of English tea! With cucumber sandwiches and a nice fresh cream scone!

We all saw you on television Sunday night, on the repeat of Peter Kay's - 'Britain's Got The Pop Factor', how was it to work on that?

That was wonderful to do! Peter Kay phoned me himself and asked me to do it, I couldn't say no!

You had some fantastic one-liners in that.

Yes, i did!

Have you got anything else lined up for 2009?

Not at the moment, but days change all the time. Something could happen tomorrow, you just don't know!

What are your plans for Christmas and New Year?

It's the family, I've got three children, two grandchildren and we're all going to spend it together.

So will you be doing any of the cooking?

Oh no! my wife is the best cook in the world! I did daily cooks challenge, I think it's out in January, and I told Anthony Worral Thompson, 'you better be good because my wife is great!'

Well, Merry Christmas, Lionel and a Happy New Year from everyone at FemaleFirst!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you too!

Lionel Blair will be celebrating 60 years in show business by starring in a new, viral game developed by the charity, Elizabeth Finn Care.

Lionel Blair 'Dancing On Thin Ice' sees the man himself tap dancing on an icy lake. All you have to do is make him break through the ice to win the chance of tea for two. Send it on to your friends and family as a great, festive game with a fantastic prize!

FemaleFirst - Stacey Malvern